The first stop on our Edinburgh Tea Tour was the Roseleaf Bar Cafe, located in the shabby glam of Leith. We liked the mismatched crockery and teapot and the quaint details like the tapestry cushions and the old fashioned telephone on the windowsill. Lucy enjoyed lifting the receiver and playing with the dial on the telephone to see if it worked but I don’t think the staff at the Roseleaf encourage that.
It looks like Lucy is engrossed in a book but in fact she is perusing the menu, which was fastened into the front cover of an old copy of Len Deighton’s Billion Dollar Brain. We chose Lotus Petal tea, which was a fragrant loose leaf black tea laced with rose petals. It is delicious with milk but don’t let it sit too long in the teapot; it doesn’t taste so good stewed.
The Roseleaf is more of a pub than a café so the selection of teas was not huge. You can order cocktails served in a tea pot if you want to combine your Jane Austen tea-with-Mr Darcy-fantasy with your Sex And The City girls about town lifestyle. The late pub opening hours are a bonus for tea lovers: we went for tea at 10pm when most other tea rooms are closed. The music was louder than in a tea room, where the clatter of porcelain cups on saucers tends to provide the percussion, but not at all intrusive. The atmosphere was friendly and welcoming and the staff had some good banter going with the customers at the bar. We are planning to go back soon to try one of Roseleaf’s Mad Hatter Tea Parties.
Roseleaf Bar Cafe, 23/24 Sandport Place, Edinburgh EH6 6EW